Category Archives: Shifting Toward a Multilingual View of Biliteracy

Part 1: Building advocacy for your K-8 dual language program.

Administrative support is a key element in establishing effective implementation of any program or initiative, including Dual Language and teaching for biliteracy. However, there is a misconception that in order for administrators to effectively support a Dual Language and/or a biliteracy program, they have to speak the languages of that program. In this post, Alyssa St. Hilaire, the Bilingual Coordinator for the Kennewick School District, shares how a walk through process allowed monolingual administrators have some powerful take-aways about Read More...

Building Background Knowledge and Oracy: Why, When, and How? Part 2 of 2

In order to ensure that students have the foundational knowledge required to engage with new learning, it is essential for instructional time to include the development of oracy and the building of background knowledge. Oracy development activities provide scaffolds for language development that ensure students are able to use the language, while background building activities provide students with knowledge they need to be able to access new content. While dedicating instructional time to do both benefits all students, they Read More...

Building Background Knowledge and Oracy: Why, When, and How? Part 1 of 2

Is there evidence demonstrating that the time spent on developing background knowledge and oracy positively impacts student learning? Research has long indicated that building background knowledge and developing oracy is beneficial for children. Strategies such as the KWL chart have been used in classrooms nationwide in attempts to activate and build students’ background knowledge and oracy skills, and to peak their interest before reading a text. However, when strategies such as these are used with language learners and students with limited language Read More...

Shifting Toward a Multilingual View of Biliteracy

Shifting Toward a Multilingual View of Biliteracy On my first day of school in the United States, I did not know how to speak English. I looked “American” and had an “American” sounding last name, yet, when the teachers spoke to me, I could not respond. I was lost in a sea of language I could not access. In disbelief that I was a language learner because of how I looked, my teachers quickly grew concerned of my ‘deficiencies’ and Read More...